Trichromatic vision

Theory: Color vision
Theory of trichromatic vision proposed by Thomas Young.

Color theory

Additive 3 color: Additive 3 color, still photography
“In a lecture on the theory of three primary colors, given at the Royal Institution of Great Britain on May 17, 1861, Maxwell presented the first demonstration of a photograph in color. According to the records of that meeting (Maxwell, 1890c, ...
  • CoePhotography_Maxwell.jpg

1 Image

Proposal of a variety of processes of three-color photography

Theory: still photography
“Louis Ducos du Hauron is reported to have become interested in the reproduction of colors by photography in 1859, when he was twentyone years old (Potonniée, 1939). In 1862 he submitted to a friend of his family, M. Lelut, a paper embodying ...
  • Coote (1993)

2 Images

Proposal of a variety of processes of three-color photography

Description of a variety of color processes, even for images in motion by the use of a rotary shutter.

Orthochromatic stock

b/w photography: Orthochromatic b/w stock
“In 1873 Dr Vogel discovered that by adding dyes to the sensitive material, its sensitivity could be extended, so that it would record green as well as blue. The new ‘orthochromatic’ plates were available commercially from 1882. The ...
  • Pathé Manual (1926)

2 Images

  • Pénichon (2013)

1 Image

Hydrotypie / Hydrotype / dye transfer

Subtractive 3 color: Dye transfer, still photography
“In the imbibition process, a dye image is transferred from a gelatin relief image to a receiving layer made either of paper or film. Charles Cros described this method of “hydrotypie” transfer printing in 1880 and suggested it ...

Sensitizing theory

Color theory
“Dr. H. W. Vogel, the discoverer of colour sensitizers, made three-colour photography possible, and has been the first to recognise the relation between colour sensitiveness of plate and printing colour in the following principle made known in ...

Silver dye-bleach

Subtractive 3 color: Dye-bleach
“Probably the first use of the catalytic property of silver was in 1889, when E. Howard Farmer disclosed the action of a silver image upon strong dichromate solutions (Eng. P. 17773/89). When a plate or film, containing a silver image, is immersed ...


Widely used in print media around 1900, the chromolithographic printing process was first adapted for the Laterna Magica and then utilized to produce early animated films primarily aimed at children. These films were usually very short ...
  • Chromolithographic Loops

93 Images in 2 Galleries


Direct color photography: Interference, still photography
“In 1891, Professor Gabriel Lippmann demonstrated to the French Académie des Sciences interference colour photographs of the spectrum and of stained glass windows, taken by a modification of Wiener’s method. An exceedingly fine grained, ...
  • CoePhotography_Lippmann.jpg

5 Images

Hand coloring

Applied colors: Manual application
Coloring of individual frames by the use of very fine brushes. The process was previously applied to lantern slides. Any water based translucent dye was suited for the process, most often the colors were acid dyes. The process was very time-consuming ...
  • Métamorphoses du papillon (1904)

66 Images in 6 Galleries

Chromogenic development

Subtractive 3 color: Chromogenic development

Lenticular Screen

Additive 3 color: Lenticular screen
“Every element of a cross-lined screen acts as a pinhole camera, and reproduces an image of the aperture of the objective in whose rear focal plane it is placed. Thus, when using a square stop, the dots in the halftone produced will be square ...
  • Steinbacher Ede Lenticular Scheme

4 Images

Toning / metallic toning (French: virage, German: Tonung)

Applied colors: Replacement of silver
In contrast to tinting, toning is not the simple immersion of a film into a dye bath but involves a chemical reaction converting the silver image. In this reaction the neutral silver image in the emulsion of the positive film is replaced by one ...
  • Pathé Manual (1926)